Kobe to Play in Italy During NBA Lockout

He's reached verbal agreement with club: source

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 30, 2011 6:22 AM CDT

(Newser) – Kobe Bryant won’t be resting on his laurels during the NBA lockout. The Los Angeles Laker has verbally agreed to a $3 million contract to play with Italian club Virtus Bologna for the first 40 days of the Italian league season, a source tells the AP. Bryant grew up in Italy and has been there this week for endorsement deals. He is due back in the US for labor talks today but is expected to return to Italy next week with a work visa, according to the source.

Kobe Bryant leaves the Campidoglio, or capitol hill, in Rome, Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011.
Kobe Bryant leaves the Campidoglio, or capitol hill, in Rome, Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011.   (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)
Kobe Bryant gestures during a sponsor's appearance in Milan, Italy, Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2011.
Kobe Bryant gestures during a sponsor's appearance in Milan, Italy, Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2011.   (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)
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